In December, Rick Perry enthusiastically accepted the nomination to be Donald Trump’s secretary of energy—unfortunately for both Perry and the American people, he had no idea what the fuck he was signing up for. According to a New York Times report, Perry originally believed the job was being “a global ambassador for the American oil and gas industry.” [Update below]
In fact, two-thirds of the Energy Department’s budget is spent on maintaining and protecting our nuclear arsenal, which Perry clearly doesn’t know much about. In his 2012 bid for the GOP nomination, Perry proposed abolishing the Energy Department before forgetting what it was even called.
Now this dunce will likely be in charge our country’s most powerful weapons. This is sure to go just fine.
“If you asked [Perry] on that first day he said yes, he would have said, ‘I want to be an advocate for energy,’” Michael McKenna, a Republican energy lobbyist who advised Perry’s 2016 campaign and worked on Trump’s transition team, told the New York Times. “If you asked him now, he’d say, ‘I’m serious about the challenges facing the nuclear complex.’ It’s been a learning curve.”
On Thursday, Perry will begin the confirmation process for energy secretary. If approved, he’ll be taking over for former MIT physics chairman, Ernest J. Moniz. The Times notes:
For Mr. Moniz, the future of nuclear science has been a lifelong obsession; he spent his early years working at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. Mr. Perry studied animal husbandry and led cheers at Texas A&M University.
Perry has no experience making high-powered national security issues. He once said of the organization, “They’ve never created one bit of energy, the best I can tell.”
This is fine. Everything is fine.
Update 1/19/2017, 1:36 PM:
Today, Michael McKenna, who is the Times’ sole named source of the story, told The Daily Caller that the story’s headline and lede “don’t really reflect what I said.” McKenna now claims that Rick Perry definitely knew what job he was accepting when he accepted it.